Saturday, August 19, 2017

Just Dance

34228284MacLachlan, Patricia. Just Dance
September 12th 2017 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
E ARC from Edelweiss Above the Treeline

Sylvie lives on a farm near a small farm in Nebraska. Before meeting her father, her mother, Min, was a famous singer who toured the world. Now, she gets to sing opera to the cows, and Sylvie is very concerned that she and her brother are not enough to keep her mother "down on the farm". Sylvie herself wants to see  more of the world, and she gets the opportunity when her teacher, Mrs. Ludolf, asks her to help Sheriff Ludolf (who learned English as an adult) write his law enforcement blog. Sylvie goes out with her father on horseback the first day, and then spends a lot of time on ride alongs with the Sheriff. Her blog posts get a lot of favorable feedback, and her haiku are especially praised. When there is a concert nearby with a former costar of her mother's, Sylvie is very concerned that her mother will rejoin him and give up her life on the farm.
Strengths: Fans who like this author's The Truth of Me, Kindred Souls,White Fur Flying, or The Poet's Dog will  be glad to add this sweet and simple tale of how love can bring the most unlikely souls together. Anyone who encourages children to write poetry will appreciate Sylvie's efforts.
Weaknesses: I had an immediate and visceral hatred of this book. For one thing, doing ANYTHING for love is an enormous mistake. It will only bite you in the bum. Sylvie was so whiny about how her mother had to be unhappy in Nebraska after touring the world that I just wanted to slap her and say "Yes! Your whining is going to make her leave you!" I don't think a ten-year-old would have a concept this sophisticated. So, perfectly fine book, very touching, and I just did NOT like it.
What I really think: This is on the young side for my readers, and aside from Sarah, Plain and Tall, none of this author's work has circulated well in my library. I will pass. It would just collect dust.

Ms. Yingling

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